On March 15, more than 200 advocates from 47 states held nearly 400 meetings with members of Congress or their staff to advocate for the needs of people with cystic fibrosis and to share their story about why quality, affordable care is so important for their loves ones.
In addition, advocates from across the country who were not able to attend March on the Hill in person were encouraged to join their colleagues by calling their members of Congress as part of the CF Foundation's first online Day of Action. In all, more than 850 advocates contacted their members of Congress about the needs of the CF community.
“This year was our largest March on the Hill to date, and CF advocates made sure Congress knew the importance of ensuring people with CF have quality, affordable health coverage,” said Mary Dwight, senior vice president of policy and advocacy for the CF Foundation. “With access to Medicaid and changes in the individual insurance market at the forefront of the health care debate in Washington, D.C., our voice is as important as ever. Year after year, I'm inspired by the power of our community and the impact we can make when we stand up together for people with cystic fibrosis.”
In their meetings with members of Congress, CF advocates asked Congress to:
- Protect access to adequate, affordable health insurance coverage, including access to Medicaid.
- Oppose barriers to accessing Medicaid coverage, including work requirements, lockout periods, and lifetime limits.
- Make the individual marketplace affordable and accessible to people with pre-existing conditions like CF by supporting bipartisan efforts to stabilize the marketplace.
- Oppose the expansion of individual market plans that lack protections for people with CF and will increase costs.
- Support robust, reliable funding for research through the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to ensure new treatments are safe and effective.
The day before March on the Hill, the CF advocacy community honored the outgoing CF Foundation National Advocacy Chair, Melissa Shiffman, and past Co-Chair Rebecca Schroeder, who stepped down in December. The CF community also welcomed the new CF Foundation National Advocacy Co-Chairs: Jaci and Drew Strube, and Chad Riedy.
To stay informed about the Foundation's advocacy work and to get involved, text “FIGHTCF” to 52886 or sign-up for the CF Foundation's Advocacy Alerts.